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Online Crundwell auction starts today

Marshals showing three Dixon properties up for sale

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012 1:15 a.m. CDT

DIXON – Looking for a designer handbag for your wife this holiday season?

How about a 44-inch flat-screen TV for Super Bowl Sunday?

For the more cowboy-minded, how about a cowhide and suede chair?

For the right price, you could own these and other items belonging to Rita Crundwell.

Starting today, the U.S. Marshals Service is auctioning 450 lots of Crundwell’s home furnishings, artwork, appliances, electronics and the like at www.professionalauction.com.

Bidding runs from 4 p.m. today until 5 p.m. Friday for 105 lots from her vacation home in Englewood, Fla.

The items from her home and ranch in Dixon will be auctioned from 4 p.m. Thursday until 1 p.m. Saturday.

If you want to bid, you must plunk down a $100 deposit; it will be refunded if you don’t win anything, and applied to your bill if you do.

No sales tax will be charged, but a buyer’s premium of 12 percent will be tacked on to any item that sells for less than $10,000, or 6 percent for those that sell for more than $10,000.

Don’t have a computer, or have e-anxiety? The marshals have you covered. They have teamed up with Dixon schools to provide a computer lab for anyone who needs help placing an online bid.

Crundwell, 59, admitted in November to stealing nearly $54 million from the city over the last 22 years. She faces up to 20 years in federal prison when she is sentenced Feb. 14 for wire fraud.

She also is charged with 60 counts of theft in Lee County, where prosecutors will try to prove she stole more than $11 million from the city since January 2010. She has a pretrial conference Dec. 19.

So far, marshals have raised around $7.4 million by selling hundreds of her prized quarter horses, her luxury motor home, many vehicles, horse tack and other equipment.

They also are selling three of Crundwell’s five properties. They have received unsolicited bids of $450,000 for the 43 acres of farmland and single-family home at 1403 Dutch Road in Dixon; $700,000 for her 83-acre ranch at 1556 Red Brick Road, also in Dixon; and $540,000 for 81 acres of Lee County farmland.

Counteroffers for the properties are due by noon Dec. 21. Public inspection of the three properties will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Saturday, and Dec. 14.

People are encouraged to make an appointment with the marshals, but those who show up on any day of the open house will not be turned away.

Her home on Route 52 in Dixon, and her vacation home in Florida have not received any bids, according to marshals.

Several of Crundwell’s vehicles and boats are being auctioned at www.appletowing.com; that sale ends Thursday.

All proceeds, minus expenses, will be given to the city as restitution once the court cases are settled.

For sale

 Some of the items for sale at the vacation home in Englewood, Fla.:

– 12-foot western decor leather sectional sofa.

– Stainless LG refrigerator/freezer.

– Streetlight-esque floor lamp.

– Wooden dry bar with rose-colored stone top and pressed tin panels.

– Crystal chandelier.

– John Deere self-propelled mower.

– Weber Genesis gas grill.

– Three-drawer wooden dresser trimmed in leather and copper.

– Wood office desk with stone top.

Some of the items up for sale from Crundwell's ranch and home in Dixon include:

– 1995 Dodge Ram pickup with 169,928 miles.

– Kurzweil/Young Chang grand piano.

– Cherrywood grandfather clock.

– Tanning bed.

– Stone fire pit.

– Two Winchester-style lever-action rifles.

– Prada bag.

– Dyed purple mink coat.

– Revolver chandelier.

– Christian Dior women's sunglasses.

Go to www.professionalauction.com to see the full list of items up for sale, information on how to register to bid and auction terms and conditions.

How it works

Computer lab

The computer lab at Dixon High School, 300 Lincoln Statue Drive, will open in room 120 at 4 p.m. Friday.

Depending on interest, the lab also will be open at noon Saturday. The U.S. Marshals Service will be on hand to answer any questions.

Anyone interested in using the lab is asked to park in the student parking lot off of Peoria Avenue and come into the building through the south door of the cafeteria.

Marshals also encourage anyone interested in using the lab to call Professional Auction Services at 800-240-7900.

Crundwell properties

Anyone interested in bidding on Crundwell's properties is asked to email Jason Wojdylo, chief inspector of the marshals asset forfeiture division, at jason.wojdylo@usdoj.gov.

Go to www.usmarshals.gov/assets/sales/crundwellrealproperties.htm to learn more about the sites, and about the terms and conditions of the sale. 

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